Regulating Digital Platforms: A Case of Indonesia

Regulating Digital Platforms: A Case of Indonesia

Nofie Iman (Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-4984-1.ch002
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Digital platforms and services are increasingly prevalent. They have challenged the traditional assumptions of technological innovations and business competition in the market. We, by and large, communicate on digital platforms and services when we are online. Even though the benefit of such phenomena might be obvious, even seem ideal at times, the perils are also worryingly apparent. There is relatively little attention has been given on the regulatory and policy aspect of digital platforms and services, let alone in the context of emerging countries. This article discusses the governance of platforms and policies that might be relevant for developing context such as Indonesia. This chapter offers an analytical framework to analyze policy options regarding digital platforms and services. It is expected that the framework could become a practical instrument to help policymakers in identifying their options and the impact thereof concerning digital platforms and services.
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Let us begin with defining digital technology first. Conceptually, digital technology actually has digital artifacts that are open, easily changed, transferable, and tend to be ambivalent (Kallinikos et al., 2013; Yoo et al., 2010). These digital artifacts have basic characteristics in the form of the ability to reprogrammability and the homogenization of the data generated. Every digital technology can produce data –– which, when extracted to the lowest layer possible, will produce universally binary code. Such uniformity can be used to reprogram the data to develop something else.

Combined together, these two peculiar characteristics allow the process of convergence and generativity (Yoo et al., 2010). We can combine two seemingly “distant” tools to generate something new. For example, we can combine shoes with electronic chips altogether that can produce “new” tools to record distance traveled, speed, heart rate, and other important medical information. Thus, the only possible option in the future is convergence. Every tool that we have will eventually be embedded with such digital capabilities, allowing us to push digital technology even further.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Unicorn: Originally a legendary creature, but now being used to describe a privately held startup company valued at over $1 billion. It was first introduced by Aileen Lee to acknowledge its statistical rarity.

Digital Platform: A combination of digital tools and services that brings together different groups of users creating value through interaction and transaction among them. It utilizes advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, cloud computing, machine learning, among others.

Platform: An open medium that allows different parties to interact in such an organized way. Platform also being used to represent a new kind of business model that creating values by facilitating interactions.

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